Currently showing only: Foreign Affairs
April 8, 2013Press Item
"I join in mourning the passing of Baroness Margaret Thatcher and in celebrating her historic role as the first female Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.
March 7, 2013Press Item
“I think the senators that went obviously wanted to talk to the President about whether or not they could reach common ground on a lot of very important issues including most importantly a compromise that we could get this country on a fiscally sustainable path and have what we call a big deal
February 28, 2013Press Item
Today, Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer joined a global coalition of 98 politicians from the United States, United Kingdom and Australia calling for urgent action to address the humanitarian crisis in the Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile regions of Sudan. Mr. Hoyer signed the letter addressed to the coalition’s respective Foreign Ministers urging them to lead the UN Security Council to action on Sudan at this critical moment.
December 21, 2012Press Item
John Kerry has served his country throughout his life, from Vietnam to the United States Senate, and now as our next Secretary of State.  He will bring his experience and knowledge from his time as Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to his new role, and I look forward to his swift confirmation. 
December 6, 2012Press Item
Today, the Senate ensured that U.S. companies will have better access to the Russian market when it passed H.R. 6156 by a strong, bipartisan vote of 92-4.  By granting Permanent Normal Trade Relations with Russia, Congress has provided the President the tools needed to ensure Russia follows World Trade Organization rules and the market access commitments it has made.  This will help create a level playing field for American businesses and workers seeking to export to the growing Russian market.  In addition, this bill provides for tougher sanctions against those officials responsible for violating human rights and basic freedoms, including those involved in the tragic death of Sergei Magnitsky.  I look forward to seeing President Obama sign this bill into law and take the steps it makes available to enforce fair trade rules that benefit American businesses and the jobs they create.
December 4, 2012Press Item
I am extremely disappointed that Senate Republicans blocked ratification of the U.N. Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities today. Its ratification would enable the United States to play a leading role in helping other nations set policies that expand opportunities for their own citizens with disabilities. Modeled after the bipartisan Americans with Disabilities Act signed into law by President George H. W. Bush in 1990, the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities represents a major step forward for individuals throughout the world living with disabilities and hoping for increased accessibility, equal opportunity, and greater independence. I was proud to have worked with former Rep. Tony Coelho and others, including former Republican Sen. Majority Leader Bob Dole, to pass the original Americans with Disabilities Act, and I strongly urge Senate Republicans to reconsider today’s vote and allow this treaty’s ratification.
November 30, 2012Press Item
Tomorrow, on World AIDS Day, we renew our commitment to fighting this terrible disease and helping to improve the lives of those millions affected by HIV-AIDS worldwide.  Together, the United States and other nations have made great advances in treating HIV-AIDS and raising awareness about how to prevent infection.  Our commitment to research and the discovery of advances has not waned, and we must not rest until HIV-AIDS no longer threatens communities here in America and around the world.                                                      
November 29, 2012Press Item
We are deeply disappointed by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas' decision to seek symbolic non-member observer status through the General Assembly of the United Nations.   We have long believed the only way to achieve a two-state solution is through direct negotiations leading to a peace treaty fully accepted by both governments and both peoples.   We are concerned that today’s unilateral action by President Abbas represents a repudiation of the Oslo Accords and a setback for the peace process.  To be clear, non-member observer status puts the Palestinian people no closer to achieving statehood, and may in fact set back this goal by inflaming tensions and making already difficult negotiations even harder.
November 16, 2012Press Item
“Mr. Speaker, I join my colleagues today from both sides of the aisle to stand with the people of Israel in support of their sovereign right to defend themselves against Hamas terror.
November 16, 2012Press Item
“With the passage of this bill, American exporters will have greater access to Russian markets, and the United States will be better positioned to enforce trade rules through the World Trade Organization and safeguard a level playing field for our businesses overseas.  This will contribute to job creation and new opportunities for our workers here at home.  At the same time, it reaffirms America’s commitment to human rights and individual freedom in Russia and throughout the world.
November 15, 2012Press Item
Israel, like all sovereign nations, has a fundamental duty to its citizens to defend their lives and their property.  For years now, Israel has endured thousands of rocket attacks by Hamas from the Gaza Strip.  These attacks have targeted civilian areas throughout Southern Israel  - and today even reached as far north as the outskirts of Tel Aviv.  As long as this terrorist organization continues to avoid disarming, abiding by past agreements, or recognizing Israel’s right to exist, it will continue to be isolated by the international community and be the cause of further hardship for the Palestinian civilians who suffer at its hands. 
September 19, 2012Press Item
“The resolution passed by the House today honors the memory of the Americans who died in last week’s attack in Benghazi and reaffirms our bipartisan commitment to the dedicated civilians who serve America overseas.  It also demonstrates our continued support for Libya’s ongoing democratic transition.
September 19, 2012Press Item
“I was incredibly proud to witness today’s presentation of the Congressional Gold Medal – our nation’s highest civilian honor – to Burmese human rights activist and Nobel Peace Prize laureate, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi.  For a quarter century, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi has served as a guiding light for those who yearn for democracy in Burma, and indeed for all who espouse the principles of human rights and non-violence around the world.  In the face of enduring hardships, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi has demonstrated a strength of character and perseverance that is helping to inspire a new period of hope for greater political freedom in Burma.”
September 13, 2012Press Item
“We are reminded of the danger that our men and women, who are sent abroad to represent the United States of America, to promote democracy and freedom around the world, we know the danger to which they are exposed. The tragic death of Ambassador [Christopher] Stevens, [State Department official] Sean Smith and others in Libya point out how dangerous the daily lives are in these areas of the world. We express our deep sympathy. But I'm sure that every embassy in the world has been put on high alert, particularly in areas where we know there are violent proclivities but also around the world, to make sure our embassy personnel are on guard, Americans are on guard and we keep our people safe.”
September 12, 2012Press Item
"I was deeply saddened to learn this morning of the news from Libya of the tragic death of Ambassador Christopher Stevens, Foreign Service Information Management Officer Sean Smith and two other American personnel in an attack in Benghazi. Their families are in my prayers today. Ambassador Stevens and Sean Smith were distinguished career diplomats who embodied the best of our Foreign Service and were instrumental in helping Libya’s democratic transition.
August 1, 2012Press Item
“First I want to rise and thank Chairwoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen for her continuing leadership and focus on this important issue, as she does on so many other issues as well.
July 5, 2012Press Item
“I commend the Obama Administration for continuing to take a strong approach to enforcing trade rules in response to the unfair import duties China placed on American autos. When American products compete on a level playing field, we win – and our workers win. China is not playing by World Trade Organization rules, and today’s announcement is part of a continuing effort by the President and Congressional Democrats to ensure a level playing field for American workers and manufacturers.
May 15, 2012Press Item
I thank the gentleman from California for yielding and for his leadership on this issue.  Rep. Howard Berman has been the leader in Congress when it comes to reminding us how important it is to prevent the rise of a nuclear Iran. He has been instrumental in securing funding for the deployment of the 'Iron Dome' anti-missile system to counter the threat from Iranian-supplied short-range rockets in the hands of terror groups like Hamas and Hezbollah.
May 9, 2012Press Item
Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I thank my friend for yielding. I have known Mr. Berman for almost half a century. He has been an extraordinary leader, as a young person, as Chairman of this committee, as Ranking Member on this committee. And I want to thank him for his leadership on this issue. He has been instrumental. I want to thank my dear friend in whose district I used to live so many years ago, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, the Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee, thank her for her leadership and her commitment. She's been a stalwart.